Monday, May 23, 2011

Exercising While Sick?

Friday night the worst sore throat hit me that I can recall in quite a long time. Saturday morning I felt good enough to run even after sleeping so poorly; I still managed a 4 mile run. As the day progressed I got more and more sick. Sunday I couldn't do anything and I was okay with that; however, Sunday night came and the coughing and bronchial stuff showed its ugly face.

My coughing is a lot worse today and I think its turning into bronchitis. I was plagued with Chronic Bronchitis back in 2009-2010. It seems to creep in now when I get sick for some reason. I do not want to go through that again, took me 3 months to get over it last time and that is not acceptable in this stage of the game! 

I looked up online today about working out. I really want to, but I have no strength or desire to get that coughing started more than it already is. I thought this was a good short article from the Mayo Clinic I thought I'd share.

Exercise and illness: Should you exercise when you're sick?
Is it OK to exercise if I have a cold but no fever?
Answer from Edward R. Laskowski, M.D.

Mild to moderate physical activity is usually OK if you have a cold but no fever. Exercise may even help you feel better by temporarily relieving nasal congestion.

As a rule of thumb for exercise and illness:

Proceed with your workout if your signs and symptoms are "above the neck" — such as runny nose, nasal congestion, sneezing or sore throat. Be prepared to reduce the intensity of your workout if needed, however.
Postpone your workout if your signs and symptoms are "below the neck" — such as chest congestion, hacking cough or upset stomach. Likewise, don't exercise if you have a fever, fatigue or widespread muscle aches.

If you choose to exercise when you're sick, listen to your body. If your signs and symptoms get worse with physical activity, stop and rest. Resume your workout routine gradually as you begin to feel better.

I am not exercising, I have no strength nor bronchial capacity.  Heck I can't even get out and walk, just want to sleep.

What about you? Do you exercise when your sick?

Excerpts from The Motivational Girl are protected by copyright and used here by permission of The Motivational Girl, 2011.


  1. OH NO Sheri!!!!!!!!!!!! Yes, rest so you get better & no 3 months of this!!!!!!

    I follow the guidelines in your post BUT I am lucky. I have not really had the below the neck stuff in years & not very often even with bad enough colds for me to even think about it.

    Recently I got the crap going around & even lost my voice but I still had energy to work out & I just modified as my bod told me to...

    HUGS & feel better!!!!!!!!!!

    PS; I get your posts late usually a day after BUT I was here getting your link for my post tomorrow & saw this! :-)


  2. I will exercise while sick but never with a sore throat. Anything that would cause me to breath from my mouth is tabu when I have a sore throat.

    Yoga is my go-to when I have no bronchial capacity.

    I hope you feel better soon. Sending you virtual, low sodium, gluten free, sugar free, organic chicken soup.


  3. @Jody - Fit at 53I can't even imagine working out when feeling this bad. You have such strength and determination Jody!

    If you don't see me in Reader, you won't get my emails until the next morning because my feed is at 5:30AM.

  4. @Jane Cartelli Thank you Jane!! The only exercise I have is getting up and going to the ladies room and kitchen. ;)

  5. I don't exercise when sick and also when I have bladder infections, which is regular. I just give my body the chance to heal and then take it from there.
    Hope you get better soon. I too am off to the doc this afternoon - woke up this morning and bladder is now so sore, I can barely move :(

  6. I cant remember when last I was sick so have no idea what I would do...get a huge shock and not train I imagine....
    I hope you start feeling better soon and can get yourself back again.
    We were taught...
    If the feeling is in the head...then train, if in the chest...don't train.

  7. When we are too sick to go to the kitchen - then we need the ICU.


  8. I follow the neck rule, mostly, but even if my symptoms are just those of a cold, if they're enough to make me just plumb not want to go the gym, I won't force myself. Better safe than sorry!

  9. I usually ask myself if I would be better off health-wise if I spent my exercise/driving to gym time in bed resting more or if I would be better off at the gym. It's ended up to be about 50/50. The few times I went to the gym sick that turned out completely worthless helped me get smarter about staying home more.

    Get well, Sheri!!

    :-) Marion

  10. I've heard that same rule of thumb. I try to let how I feel be my guide and not just either use it as an excuse or feel guilty if I don't work out. Hope you are feeling better soon.

  11. I've been following that 'rule' for a while and even though I don't get sick often (knock on wood) it has always served me well. I can remember a time when exercise was the end all be all for me (hum, going from anorexic to exercise bulimic, imagine that). But I almost ALWAYS ended up either injured from being unable to perform the exercises with good form, or was made even more sick, thus needed MORE time off to recuperate!

    Don't feel guilty for taking time off...this is the time you need to nurture yourself and your body is SCREAMING at you to do just that. Feel better soon!!! xoxo


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